UW Research

Matching Funds Request

The Provost’s Office is committed to fostering the development of exciting UW collaborative research programs, especially those that are multidisciplinary such as Centers, Institutes and Consortia. In collaboration with departments and schools/colleges, the University endeavors to provide the institutional support that is often required to successfully compete for funds for multidisciplinary, multi-investigator, research programs. Although the Provost would like to be able to support every request for institutional support, the resources available are of course limited, and thus it is necessary to establish guidelines to ensure that these scarce resources are allocated in a fair, transparent and productive manner.


Matching funds in the form of direct financial contributions and/or salary cost-sharing are provided only in instances where it is specifically required by a funding agency, or necessary to be competitively successful as documented in the funding announcement or in writing from an agency official. The department chair can assist with determining whether a proposal meets the requirements for receiving cost-share funding.

  • General guidelines for funding match requests from the Provost’s Research Initiative Fund in the Office of Research require that 2/3 of the overall match be funded by the departments and/or College or School of the PI and participating faculty. Proposals without department and college support will not be considered.
    • Proposals involving key investigators from several departments generally require match from each department and college represented.
    • Generally, the total level of institutional support (department, school/college, and Provost’s Office) requested should be commensurate with the size of the grant, and is normally only provided for grants or contracts that pay the full indirect cost rate.
  • Requests should be for items that contribute to infrastructure (equipment, core expertise). Salary and expendables may be supported if they are clearly essential to support the administrative infrastructure for the funded work, but are not allowable within the costing rules of the funding program. Salary requests must also include the cost of the associated benefits.
  • Documentation needs to be provided that cost-sharing is either required or expected.
  • Matching funds requests to the Provost’s Office should illustrate how the proposed program addresses one or more of the following criteria:
    • High Impact (examples below)
      • Is potentially transformational to a field or discipline at the national or international level.
      • Is potentially transforming to a critical area at UW.
      • Seeds a new effort with strong potential to excel at UW.
    • Interdisciplinary
      • Crosses traditional disciplinary boundaries.
      • Usually involves multiple schools/colleges with broad impact at UW.
    • Integrates research and education (examples below)
      • Facilitates classroom instruction.
      • Facilities undergraduate and/or graduate research training.
      • Facilitates community outreach and interaction.
    • Creates new opportunities (likelihood of fostering additional research opportunities and funding).
  • DEI statement. All requests must contain a statement regarding how this project supports diversity, equity, and inclusion at the UW.


Requesting funds:

  • Use the Provost Research Initiative Matching Funds Request Form.
  • Requests should be made well in advance (6-8 weeks) of the Agency funding deadline. Requests with less than 2 weeks of lead time to the the proposal deadline may not be reviewed.
  • PI discusses matching request, rationale, and overall strategy with department chair(s), and secures departmental commitment(s). Typically, requests are for direct cost allocations such as equipment, supplies or salary off-set (cost-sharing). Commitments for space or access to specialized facilities will normally be dealt with at the department and/or school/college level.
  • Department chair works with dean’s office to develop the final match request. If multiple deans are involved, the PI’s dean’s office takes the lead to coordinate the request and obtain the necessary electronic approvals for each unit.
  • The dean’s office then emails the completed form to ORfunds@uw.edu. Requests must be made through a dean’s office.
  • If approved, the Office of Research will provide via email a commitment letter signed by the Vice Provost for Research. This letter provides the details of the match commitment, as well as an official reference number to be used by the dean’s office when claiming the funds.
  • The PI (or PI’s staff) indicates matching support from the Office of Research (CC100386) on the eGC1 and attaches the Commitment Letter to the “Attached Documents” section of the eGC1.
  • Receipt of the matching request is contingent upon receipt of the grant award, and may be reduced if the funding award is less than initially requested.

Claiming the Funds:

  • When/if the sponsored project is awarded the PI should ask their dean’s office to claim the Matching Funds.
  • The dean’s office will send an email to ORfunds@uw.edu with the following information:
    • Copy of the commitment letter from the Vice Provost office.
    • Notice of award from the sponsor.
    • A cost center (at minimum) or driver worktag that can accept funding from resource RS100001 (Other Designated Operating Fund).
  • The Vice Provost’s office will prepare a funding transfer to move funds to the cost share commitment line of the external grant.


  1. What kinds of DEI impacts should I include in my DEI statement?

Answer: Note the activities of faculty involved in the project that are specifically focused on either DEI-related research, or DEI-related activities such as outreach, undergraduates, graduate students, postdocs, etc. If the project itself has a DEI focus, specify how that will impact DEI at UW.

  1. My proposal does not have matching funds required, but the funding announcement lists institutional commitment as one of the evaluation criteria. Is this proposal eligible for central matching funds?

Answer: Usually no, since “institutional commitment” language typically means that standard resources will be made available (research and office space, institutional support, etc.). Unless there is specific language that refers to or implies the need for nonstandard resources, or unless you have something in writing to this effect from a program officer or from prior review comments, the proposal would not be eligible for central matching funds.

  1. My proposal does not meet all of the criteria listed but matching funds are required by the sponsor. Is this proposal eligible for central matching funds?

Answer: Yes. It is not necessary to meet all of the criteria listed.  However, proposals that meet multiple criteria will be prioritized.

  1. Matching funds are not required or expected by the sponsor, but my proposal is for very important research that cannot be completed without matching funds due to budget constraints by the sponsor. Is this proposal eligible for central matching funds?

Answer: No. We encourage you to seek matching funds from your unit, but due to funding limitations, central matching funds can only be awarded for those proposals in which matching funds are documented to be required or expected.

  1. My proposal has a low indirect cost rate, but matching funds are required. Is this proposal eligible for central matching funds?

Answer: Yes. However, given limited funds, priority will be given to proposals with full indirect costs, not for those that would be subsidized by the university even without matching funds.

  1. I am at UW Bothell. Is my proposal eligible for central matching funds?

Answer: No. UW Bothell and UW Tacoma do not contribute to the pool of matching funds used for this purpose, and therefore, faculty whose proposals go through those units are not eligible for these central matching funds. The same is true of PIs whose proposals are handled by the FHCRC, Seattle Children’s, or other affiliated units. We encourage you to seek matching funds from your own unit.